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April 20 Artist of the Day

Name: Odessa Kelley

Location: Panama City Beach, Florida

Art/Craft: Wildlife pencil renderings and paintings

Website: http://odessakelley.com

Odessa has had a lifelong fascination with wildlife and art. As a child she spent many hours at the local library immersed in books about the Master Painters of the Renaissance. When she wasn’t at the library, she was outdoors studying the butterflies, insects and wildlife native to her home in Northwest Florida. As a self-taught fine artist Odessa uses photography and life experiences to produce dramatic images of the world’s flora and fauna. She complements these tools with detailed research about each subject. Her paintings reveal her love for art and color coupled with an irrepressible reverence for nature and wildlife. Odessa strives to be true to the wildlife she paints bringing not only their image to life, but their spirit as well

As a child Odessa studied art under a private tutor and showed much artistic promise. During her twenties she flourished when she disciplined herself for artistic development in color, light and composition through acrylics. As an adult, Odessa traveled the U.S. to experience the variety of cultures and landscapes that make up our beautiful country. While living in Arizona, Odessa was introduced to the art of the Southwest. She fell in love with the vivid colors and realistic style the artists use to tell the story of the American Southwest.

Because of her inquisitive nature, she has experimented with many different media. Although acrylics and oils are her primary artistic vehicles, Odessa has a deep love for Pastels. As a professional artist, Odessa blends the vivid colors of Southwestern Art with her intimate knowledge of nature into a painted story of our natural world. She credits any skill she possesses to many hours spent at the easel, the steadfast encouragement of her parents and husband and to the many artist whose work she admires.

Odessa’s concern for wildlife habitat loss and the devastating effects of urban sprawl has led her to study, paint and deeply appreciate the indigenous wildlife of North America. Odessa is constantly looking for ways to help the native wildlife so when Odessa and her husband bought their beach cottage they set to work creating a wildlife sanctuary in their yard. Together they have planted host and nectar plants for native butterflies, made nesting boxes for birds and planted food and shelter plants for native birds and local wildlife. Odessa finds all the inspiration she needs to create her paintings…right in her own back yard.

“I am excited to start my 2010 show schedule with TroyFest and look forward to meeting all of the friendly people of Troy,” stated Odessa.

You can view more of her artwork at http://odessakelley.com.